University-Industry Partnership: Showcasing the world's first intelligent optical edge data center network system

In a progressively composite and multifaceted research landscape, universities and industries benefit from collaboration that is exactly what the National Chiao Tung University (NCTU) believes in and strives for.  Being a world leading university with strong industrial partnership NCTU continues to innovate new findings. One of most recent examples is the world's first intelligent optical edge data center network system showcased at the IEEE/OSA Optical Fiber Conference (OFC) held in San Diego, USA, as well as at the Open Compute Project (OCP) summit, held in San Jose, USA, in March 2019. ( This remarkable achievement was accomplished by a NCTU and Delta-Electronics joint R&D team led by Prof. Maria Yuang of the Computer Science Department and Prof. Po-Lung Tien of the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at NCTU.


The “system” overcomes the limitations of the current electrical switching-based technology, achieving low energy consumption (82% power saving), ultra-low latency (by 100-500times), high bandwidth, and high scalability. In particular, the technology has been shown to be advantageous for 5G applications with ultra-high bandwidth and ultra-low latency demands, such as self-driving, drone, and AR/VR. Prof. Yuang and Prof. Tien have been devoted to optical communication networking research for nearly twenty years since 2000, from the peak period of optical communications through the rise and fall of the Internet bubble. The research and prototyping systems include metro optical networks, passive optical networks (PON), and the cloud-based optical data center networks. Since 2017, Delta Electronics has shown enormous interest in their optical data center networking technology, in particular, for the application in 5G edge computing. With major equipment donations by Delta Electronics NCTU team has collaborated closely with the company and built an optical edge data center network system, tailored to supporting 5G applications. This is another success story, fully exemplifying the valuable partnership between industry and academia.


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